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    2014 Reading Challenge

    2014 Reading Challenge
    Tammy has read 0 books toward her goal of 36 books.

    « Get Your Index-Card-A-Day {ICAD} Badge | Main | Daily Paper Prompt #61: Create to the Rhythm of the Music »


    Index-Card-A-Day Challenge
    The 2014 Challenge Starts on June 1!


    If you are looking for a fun set of daily prompts, check out the series of 61 techniques-based Daily Paper Prompts

    Welcome to the 2014 Index-Card-A-Day Challenge

    The challenge is about the DOING and not the KEEPING or PRESERVING or ARCHIVING. It is the process of creating each day that matters.


    Go buy a pack of index cards. Cheap ones.

    ♥ draw ♥ doodle ♥ write ♥ collage ♥ paint ♥ haiku ♥ stamp ♥ stitch ♥

    ONE INDEX card each day


    61 DAYS : 61 CARDS


    2014 Index-Card-a-Day

     June 1 to July 31, 2014

     {You do not need to catch up, just start}  

    3x5" index card, gelly rolls

    What do I do to start?

    Starting on June 1st, create something on a 3x5" index card every day for 61 days. If you start after June 1 you do not need to catch up, just start. You can do more at the end if you wish. But get going, that is what is important.

    Just index cards.

    [if you are reading in a feed reader, click to read the full post]

    Simple materials push you to think in new ways. 

    Do we have to use index cards?

    The short answer is YES. That's the whole point. Trust me. I love watercolor paper and I understand the difference in paper quality. I get it. But this is simple stuff. Not precious. Just a stack of cards on your desk or kitchen counter. Grab one, create. I suggest 3x5" index cards or index card dividers {these are made out of manila folder type paper}. Maximum size = 4" x 6"

    Why index cards? We use index cards specifically because they are cheap, not precious, and definitely "not" the perfect substrate. They are abundant, and thus we do not hesitate to pitch them when the work turns into a catastrophe. Over the years I've had many questions about doing the challenge on another substrate. For example, people have asked if they can simply cut watercolor paper to size, do digital index cards in photoshop, use their grandmother's vintage recipe cards, use glossy postcards, old B&W photographs, tourist postcards, gelatin prints etc. All of these would indeed make for fun projects! They simply aren't index cards;} So if you want to do index-card-a-day, use index cards.

    Index cards are cheap.

    How does it work?

    Each day, I'll post an index card creation.
    Each week I'll post a list of 100% optional prompts.
    Each day, you create art on an index card.

    3x5" index cards, paint chips, stitched

    Why do this challenge?

    Each individual index card creation represents a conscious choice by one person to do one creative thing over the course of one typical day. A choice to infuse life with art and creativity, one step at a time, one card at a time. The challenge is a creative kick that can spark your imagination. There are 1000's of cards completed each year. The creative energy just might change your life. But you won't know unless you try. 

    What should I do with my cards when ICAD is finished?

    Stack them up and take a photograph! What matters is NOT collecting a bunch of index card creations but that daily bit of creativity on a blank canvas which is not precious. You will eventually find a purpose for your cards. You can give your cards as gifts, make a huge inspiration wall with your cards, sew them into a quilt, file them in a collaged recipe box, put them in a binder or photo album, mail them to friends. Or poke holes in your ICADs and place them on a huge metal jump ring. I promise that you don't need to know what you'll do with your cards. We don't need to know what we will do with our art. It is the EXPERIENCE that makes the difference, not the stack of cards. 

    3x5" index card, neocolors

    Why do we use 3x5" or 4x6" index cards?

    It's a perfect size for experimentation.
    Index cards are a basic material found in any office supply store.
    The small size of the canvas can inpire ideas. 
    You can incorporate the lines on the card in your creation. Or ignore the lines. Or work on the back.
    Anything goes. Paint it with acrylic paints. Drip india ink on it. Dye the card with espresso. Practice origami folds. Stitch it. Sketch on it. Doodle on it. Stamp it. Collage it. Or cut up the card and weave the pieces back together. Document your paint collection.

    The index cards are part of the challenge.

    Are There Prompts?

    Yes. There are two types of prompts. I call them THEMES and PROMPTS. More on that a bit further down this page. These are 100% optional. About half of the participants have historically followed the prompts. Prompts are posted Fridays starting May 30 for 9 weeks. Mix and match prompts as you wish. I'll share ideas and inspiration along the way.

    What resources does Daisy Yellow provide?

    • Each day of the challenge, I post an index card.
    • Each week of the challenge, I post a Mister Linky for you to add a link to one of your cards.
    • Each week I post a set of 100% optional themes + prompts
    • Guest posts from artists around the globe.
    • A Daisy Yellow Flickr group dedicated to the challenge. 
    • A Daisy Yellow ICAD Facebook group dedicated to the challenge. 
    • Ideas, ideas, ideas. And also some ideas.

    Can I help spread the ICAD Love?

    Please spread the word across the globe by tweeting, blogging about the challenge, posting a link on your FB page, etc. Talk about what it means to you, how you approach the challenge, why you do it, why index cards are important, how it has changed your creative life, why it makes you happy. 

    Motivate challengers by being an art cheerleader. Leave comments on other people's work at Flickr and FB. Leave blog comments. FAV stuff at Flickr. ♥︎ stuff at Tumblr and Instagram. Talk about your experience. Like stuff at FB. Be a cheerleader. ICAD develops into the best kind of crazy! The fanfare spurs everyone on to keep going toward the goal. 

    Where should I link my blog posts?


    Are there hashtags?

    On twitter + instagram + tumblr + facebook use #icad. On flickr tag your artwork icad or icad2014

    2014 Weekly Themes {Optional}
    Themes refer to the medium, color palette or technique. 
    {Posted every 3 weeks}

    Weeks 1 + 2 + 3 {not yet available}
    Weeks 4 + 5 + 6 {not yet available}
    Weeks 7 + 8 + 9 {not yet available}

    2014 Weekly Prompts {Optional}
    Prompts refer to the topic or content of your index cards.
    {Posted every Friday}

    Week 1: June 1 {not yet available}
    Week 2: June 8 {not yet available}
    Week 3: June 15 {not yet available}
    Week 4: June 22 {not yet available}
    Week 5: June 28 {not yet available}
    Week 6: July 5 {not yet available}
    Week 7: July 12 {not yet available}
    Week 8: July 19 {not yet available}
    Week 9: July 26 {not yet available}

    Mediums? Themes?

    Anything you want. Stitch, paint, draw, drip, stain, weave, fold, cut, collage, ink, acrylic, watercolor. You are limited only by your imagination. If you like series, you could do a series each week or every two weeks or every month. Like neocolors in week one, acrylics in week two, cartoons in week three. Totally up to you!

    Are the Prompts and Themes translated into other languages, by chance? 

    Yes! Thanks to our highly sophisticated team of volunteer translators, the prompts and themes will be translated into French, Italian, Swedish, Polish and German. The translations will be on the same page as the original prompts. Coming in the weeks ahead.

    Is there a fancy badge for my blog?

    Yes, get an all-new 2014 ICAD badge for your blog sidebar. 

    Where should we post our index cards?

    We want to see all of your index cards! There are several spots to post your cards. 

    Add your index cards to the Daisy Yellow Flickr Group

    Add your index cards to the Daisy Yellow ICAD Facebook Group. The ICAD 2013 Challenge FB group is now closed. You can join the regular Daisy Yellow FB group here. A new FB group for 2014 will be opening before the beginning of May. 

    How did the index-card-a-day challenge start?

    I started index-card-a-day in 2011 on a whim. I was sitting in a cafe and wanted to draw. I happened to have a stack of index cards in the pocket of my backpack and drew some mandalas. I thought that it might be fun to draw a bunch of cards over the course of the summer.

    Trivia: ICAD went for 92 days in 2011, 61 days in 2012 and 2013. In 2014 we'll do 61 days.

    Each year, I create index cards along with everyone else and I post every single card to Daisy Yellow. So each day you can pop over for some inspiration. And once again, we'll have guest index card creators each week.


    Nothing vulgar, nothing that would make folks say "ewwwwww" or cringe. The challenge is family friendly. Kids are welcome to join the challenge and yes, you can post your kids' cards on the Flickr or FB groups, just tag them #kidart. Over the years many kids have participated in the challenge. Please do not to "push" them to create one a day, keep it fun. Also, the size limit for index cards is 4x6" and actual index cards must be used. 

    What does it cost?

    ICAD is FREE. If you find value in this challenge, you are welcome to contribute to Tammy's tip jar to help fund the overhead costs of running Daisy Yellow including blog hosting, website fees and... most importantly... coffee and scones. Contributions are appreciated. 

    Are there resources for making index card artwork?

    Thoughts on preparing for the challenge
    A zillion things you can do with an index card
    ICAD introduction {how it all began}
    Ideas for your stack of finished index cards
    Hanna's guest post: Index Card Art

    How do I get updates in my feed reader?

    There are two separate feeds for Daisy Yellow. Feed #1 provides all of the regular blog posts. Feed #2 provides only posts in the prompts/index-card-a-day section of the blog. My guess is that you will want both feeds if you are doing ICAD. 

    Subscribe via any feed reader.

    Feed #1. Copy/paste this link in your feed reader search box:


    Feed #2. Copy/paste this link in your feed reader search box:


    Subscribe via Bloglovin {a feed reader}

    Feed #1:

    Follow on Bloglovin

    Feed #2:

    Follow ICAD on Bloglovin

    Subscribe via email.

    Feed #1. Subscribe to daisy yellow blog updates by email

    Feed #2. Subscribe to daisy yellow icad and prompt updates by email

    Can I post the ICAD prompts + Tammy's index cards to my blog?

    No. Please don't. This is the 4th year of the challenge and I've learned a lot about keeping it organized! The process works better if there are not a lot of repeated + intersecting posts. I know that you are excited to share the fun, and the best way to do that is to hop around and say hello and cheer each other on... and post your work at your blog, Instagram, Flickr or FB to inspire others.

    PLEASE DO NOT copy/paste the weekly prompts or my index cards to your blog. The challenge is a labor of love but the content and copyright is that of Daisy Yellow.

    Design, content and images © 2011-2014 Tammy Garcia.

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    Reader Comments (25)

    Remember...index cards without lines are available at most office supply stores! Then you don't have to ignore the lines!

    05.26.2013 | Unregistered CommenterLynn

    I hope I can keep up with this challenge, it sound inspiring! I featured this post in my Friday's Fave! http://www.adventureintodomesticland.com/2013/05/fridays-fave-28.html

    05.31.2013 | Unregistered CommenterAlice Kinglseigh

    I'll start tomorrow - it hit me this morning {May 31st} that I should look this up for 2013. Glad I did! THANK YOU!

    05.31.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMarti Schrock

    I don't have a blog and wouldn't call myself an artist in the least, but I enjoy creating and this sounds like an awesome doable challenge! Thank you for your hard work putting it together. Off to round up some index cards!!! :) :)

    05.31.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMelissa

    I am not an artist either. But I do enjoy experimenting with colored pencils etc. I look forward to the challenge.

    05.31.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMarlene

    This sounds great fun and something different for me, as I am mostly a textile artist. How can I put that ICAD image onto my blog please?

    06.1.2013 | Unregistered CommenterChristine Linton

    This sounds like so much fun and perhaps just what I need to get my creative juices flowing. Excited to go out and buy my index cards!

    06.1.2013 | Unregistered CommenterRita

    Hey Tammy, is there a code I can use to put a button on my blog if people want to hop over here?

    06.1.2013 | Unregistered CommenterKaren B

    Just posted a link to this FAQ in my posting of card #1.

    I'm really excited to be playing along with this. It's such a great idea. Thanks for the "Challenge" (and I can't wait to see what you come up with this year)!

    06.1.2013 | Unregistered CommenterCrafty Madre

    This sounds fun, I d like to join in. Can we post our own cards on our blog without copying the prompts

    Suzy x

    06.2.2013 | Unregistered Commentersuzy

    Got started yesterday. I had so much fun last year. Thanks Tammy for all the awesome prompts and work you do.

    06.2.2013 | Unregistered Commenterkatie romo

    OK I'm in! This seems like a fun easy way to spark some creativity in my life. I am new to doing arty stuff so this seems like a do-able size "canvas" for a newbie like me!

    06.3.2013 | Unregistered CommenterCaryl

    Found you via Aimee at Atrsyville. Love this for a daily exercise !

    06.4.2013 | Unregistered CommenterAnnie

    I'd love to do this - how do I join?

    06.5.2013 | Unregistered CommenterAnn

    Is there any place I need to sign up or do I just start and then post? This looks so fun. A friend is doing it and it encouraged me. Thanks.

    06.12.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMaryLou Rupp

    I LOVE this idea! You are fantastic!

    06.20.2013 | Unregistered CommenterJo

    This is so much fun! Such a challenge for me since 98% of what I do is digital. I am having a blast with paper and glue, even tried my hand at zentagles and printing.

    Here's a link to my set of cards so far.


    06.29.2013 | Unregistered CommenterLinda Gibbons

    Wow! I just found this post today, the last day of June. But that's ok. I'm going to start today. I love these challenges that make me carve out time to just create. Thanks!

    06.30.2013 | Unregistered CommenterNannypie

    Just found this, how cool! I've been writing a haiku a day and posting on my blog the Art Prescription for a year and seven months. I'm going to have to get some index cards for some haikus. It has been so rewarding and I couldn't dream of missing a day! Come by and visit www.artprescription.com

    07.27.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBeverly Dyer

    Today is August 24th and I just found this index card project ! Is it to late to sign up? I do I sign up?

    Brenda, The challenge will begin again on June 1, 2014. Until then, we're starting a new set of prompts called the Daily Paper Prompts. Learn more here ---> http://daisyyellowart.com/icad/daily-paper-prompt-intro.html

    08.24.2013 | Unregistered CommenterBrenda Deno-Sims

    I'm ready for ICAD 2014~~ Grabbed an image for my blog (Arty Auntie http://artyauntie.blogspot.com/ ); touted in Artful Mail Groupies ((https://www.facebook.com/groups/1399529246976125/) (recruiting for you!). Can't wait. I'm all set!

    04.2.2014 | Unregistered CommenterBetty R

    I just noticed your announcement for 2014 I cad challenge. I can't wait to begin. I have been part kenneling for the past few months and am completely addicted. This will be a nice little addition to doing that. Love the idea of it being so portable and convenient.

    04.5.2014 | Unregistered CommenterKaren Weaver

    I haven't participated in this yet other years, but I am very excited for it this year! I even got out a few index cards to play around with since I was feeling inspired. :)

    04.15.2014 | Unregistered CommenterTheresa

    This sounds like a lot of fun, and exactly my cup of tea! Hmmmm...tea dying might be something fun to try on an index card LOL! I've got loads of index cards in all colours sitting in my desk, - this would be a great way to actually do something with some of them. I think I might go get some right now to play with...I'm feeling inspired!

    04.18.2014 | Unregistered CommenterJen

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